Gros Morne National Park
Travel Update Summer 2020: Most destinations, sites and parks reopened with limitations. Check the official websites and read our crucial ‘BEST TIME TO GO' and ‘AVOIDING THE CROWDS’ tips:
Gros Morne is beautiful year round but is best visited between late May and Mid October. The temperatures are pleasant and whales can be spotted (in July/August) as well as some icebergs (in June).
It’s unpredictable and often changes very dynamically. Also prepare yourself for hikes to higher elevations, as it is much cooler there.
May - October (warmer months): Temperatures become pleasant in May: 5-11°C (41-52°F). However, many hiking trails remain partly snow covered throughout May. Also hiking/climbing Gros Morne Mountain summit is not permitted until the beginning of July. In June it gets warmer: 5ºC- 20ºC (40-70ºF). The months of July and August bring the warmest and driest conditions: Average daytime temperature 16–25 °C (61–77°F). September and October temperatures are still pleasant. In October they drop to 5-10°C (41-50°F).
November - April (cooler months): Especially January, February and March are the best months for winter/snow activities. In years of higher snowfall, skiing is even possible into late April. Temperatures range from −10-0°C / 14-32°F.
The warmest months of July and August are also the peak tourist months. However, even during high season it’s never heavily crowded in Gros Morne National Park. The only limitations are the tight accommodations in July/August. Book early if you plan to visit in summer.
Highlights (Icebergs, Whale Watching):
A few icebergs can be seen from May until early July. Visit from mid-May until late June to be on the safe side (Iceberg Facts). However, the much better spots to view them are along the east cost. They are traveling from the north (St. Anthony) to the south, passing Twillingate, then Bonavista. The best months for whale watching are July and August, as they follow their food sources. You will increase your chances off seeing whales by taking a boat tour in Gros Morne NP. In some areas you can still see them in September. Also wildflowers bloom during most of the summer.
The ancient landscape of Gros Morne National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It’s an extraordinary and diverse terrain on Newfoundland’s west coast: Soaring fjords, moody mountains with arctic-alpine tundra, deep valleys, barren cliffs and beaches of white sand. This exceptional park can be explored by land and sea. Wander coastal pathways, take a boat tour to the heart of a fjord or hike up Gros Morne Mountain.
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Review (by user Adam Vautour):
'A challenging, back country adventure awaits you in Gros Morne NL. Take the ferry into the fjord and hike up to the plateau for an iconic and epic vista. Or pick a side of the fjord and make your way around for a very rewarding 3-6 day journey. Strong orienteering skills are a must, and you will have to demonstrate to park officials that you are capable before they will give you a transponder and send you on your way. While the insect life is the most abundant, you're almost guaranteed to see moose.
The terrain can be difficult in a way not like any other; in a word TUCKAMORE. This is a typical Newfoundland term for the stunted Balsam Fir and Spruce trees the essentially are low growing wood that can be just over head height or shorter, and can be a forest of trees growing along the ground with a shin biting, ankle wrenching tangle of unforgiving branches growing upwards. The best way to deal with tuckamore is to go around it; obviously thats not always possible so if you have to travel thru tuckamore, one good way is to remove your pack and roll it in front of you as you crawl along behind. When not in tuckamore some other challenging aspects are significant to severe elevation changes and detours around geographic features or small to medium size lakes that dot the map. A very satisfying trip!'